Date of Award
Doctor of Ministry
Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary
Doctor of Ministry DMin
The priesthood of all believers is a theme I have heard sounded within the Seventh-day Adventist Church for many years, yet there are still many who are not really engaged in ministry who are on our church books. In our churches there seems to be a lack of close connections with one another in mutual support and in ministry to others. Equipping for every member is also lacking, an equipping that develops disciples and moves them into the paradigm of disciple-makers. As a church, we have good results with winning and baptizing individuals, but it seems there has been a lack of building community, equipping, and sending out those who have been baptized.
Many cell churches around the world have experienced outstanding results with building community and equipping through a structure of “doing” church that involves every member in a cell (holistic small group). The method used to complete this project was to look at Scriptures, biblical history, small group literature, and existing cell churches to discover how they apply the concepts of community and equipping. The next step was to develop training manuals in order to teach others the importance of a total ministry for all believers, then take such training material into the seminary classroom and also into the field.
The results of developing training intensives and taking them into the classroom and the field have proven: (1) there is a desire to do more than what has been done in the past to develop community and equipping, (2) that such a ministry when implemented produces an involvement of everyone in ministry, (3) that community and equipping produce a greater harvest, and (4) that changes take time, much more than expected.
While the training has produced good results, and churches are continually asking for training, there must be continued improvement in the training materials. Equipping materials also need to be continually developed. The cell system is viable, yet it cannot stop at this point because it has had some success. It must continue to be sharpened and shared.
Seventh-day Adventists--Membership; Cell churches; Small groups--Religious aspects--Seventh-day Adventists; Laity--Training of
James, Donald C., "The Development and Implementation of Intensive Training for Planting and/or Transitioning to Cell Church Models Within the Seventh-day Adventist Church" (2005). Project Documents. 519.
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